ESPAÑA SPRING ENCOUNTER AS TEXT
After experiencing the first day of class and officially seeing everyone that is going to travel with me in my first trip to España I felt a sense of relief, because everyone genuinely seems like great people, and a buzz of excitement to be able to experience this travel experience with others who seem to have the same excitement as me. I was happy to see how many other women were going to be on this trip because I genuinely believe that I can create some long-lasting friendships because of it. Continuing with the questions laid out I will explain why I am even in this class. If I am being completely honest ever since I was little, I have loved traveling and wanted to go to Spain, my first and only other time in Europe was in Paris and I truly cherish that trip and all its memories as I was only eight, so I had a very childlike view of the trip. To give you a view into me as a person, I have always loved food and many of my memories are attached to a meal I have had that altered my brain chemistry, one of those meals being a baguette sandwich that we found in a sandwich cart in the underground subway in Paris. All these little details do have a point as España is known for having an amazing cuisine, from their tapas to the delicious Gallego paella. Continuing, in 2020 my family and I planned a trip to Spain where we were going to visit multiple cities and I was going to experience watching one of my favorite soccer teams FC Barcelona. However, as we all know, the Covid-19 pandemic hit at that time, so we were not able to go. Ever since then, I’ve felt at a loss of not being able to visit, because it has been one of my dreams for as a long as I can remember. Throughout my life my mother has always talked about studying abroad in college and that it is an opportunity that I must take when it is presented to me. When I saw that FIU Honors offered this program I immediately jumped at the opportunity.
Another influencing factor for choosing Spain specifically to do this program is my ethic background. I am Cuban and Venezuelan from my parents, however my grandparents are Italian and Spanish, and we are visiting my family’s hometown, Toledo. I really believe that traveling to Spain will help me connect to my roots and learn more about my heritage. I also believe that this class that Professor Bailey teaches will help me see the Spanish influence in my parents’ cultures as well as the influences that the Americas have given to Spain. Finally, I just really hope to gain a better understanding of the European culture and see what it would look like to live in Spain, even if it is just for a few weeks. I am really excited to visit Barcelona specifically because of all the history and architectural significance.